High Lifter officials see major attendance increase at Minnesota event
By the eve of Quadna Mud Nationals, High Lifter officials already suspected the event would be a hit, as more campers arrived on Thursday than had in the two years’ past. Then Friday hit, and it was evident to High Lifter and previous years’ attendees that 2015 was going to be a good year for the third-annual Minnesota event.
“Attendance was up considerably,” Kelly Roberts, High Lifter marketing manager, reported to Powersports Business. “All of the reserved camping spots were full, and the park’s open area camping had lots of RVs and tent campers. We added three new camping areas this year and will add more for 2016.”
Attendees traveled in from throughout Minnesota, as well as Iowa, Illinois, North Dakota, South Dakota, Michigan, Wisconsin and Canada. Some Mud Nationals fans even drove from Texas, where High Lifter’s annual ATV Mud Nationals is held.
“The people who come to the event continue to tell others and bring their friends back with them. We had several large groups of people who have been in prior years and continue to support the event and share their experiences with their friends,” Roberts said.
Though word of mouth has been a large driver of Quadna’s attendance increase, High Lifter also promoted the event though its Facebook and Instagram pages (Mud National Events) and on several Facebook pages in Minnesota and Canada.
“A large part of the attendees have never been to an event such as this, where they can bring their machine and participate. Most, if not all, events in Minnesota are spectator events, where the Mud Nationals are participatory events,” Roberts said about attracting enthusiasts to the Quadna event.
Like the ATV Mud Nationals, the Quadna event, held at Quadna Mountain Park in Hill City, Minn., includes an Obstacle Course, Poker Run and Mud Bog Races. For 2015, a Sled pull was added, and in 2016, High Lifter is hoping to add another event.
“The competitions we host are not common in this area, so bringing an ATV/UTV mud event to the north has created a lot of excitement and buzz,” Roberts said.
With a wide variety of events to watch and participate in and riding throughout Quadna Mountain Park, Roberts said activities were available for attendees of all ages, as they ranged from age 2 to senior citizens.
“The park was full of ATV/UTV enthusiasts riding, competing, hanging out with friends and having fun in the mud. Every person we spoke to had an awesome time and said they would be back next year,” she said.
Many attendees also visited the vendor area, which included booths from sponsors Polaris, Yamaha, AMSOIL and Warn, among others. Each vendor that Roberts spoke to was happy with the turnout, and many were repeat exhibitors, who have been able to see the attendance increase each year.
“The Polaris booth stayed busy with guests taking advantage of their free test drives. Other vendors saw an increase in foot traffic in their booth from years prior. Our food vendors even opted to stay open during the [nightly] concerts to serve to the crowd listening to the Wild Hawg Band,” Roberts reported.
In sum of the event, she said, “It was very successful. The crowd was happy; the events went off without any problems; we had no major accidents and the weather was beautiful.”
With so much good news to report from the third annual event, Roberts said High Lifter is already working on dates for next year’s Quadna Mud Nationals, and Save the Dates for 2016 will soon be sent out.